Testimonials – Tina Riley

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I am a 6th grade teacher at Wickman Elementary School. I have been teaching for 17 years at schools with varying socioeconomic status. I was first introduced to the Wickman Kiva Kids program in 2009. Our 11 and 12 year old students were introduced, via internet, to people all over the world, in impoverished areas, who were trying to better themselves and their communities with entrepreneurial goals and aspirations. They quickly learned that with just a few dollars, they could make a profound impact on the life of another.

This connection was inspiring to our students as they learned names and saw the faces of people around the world in need of assistance to turn their aspirations into reality. Throughout the course of the year, I watched my students track the progress of their chosen entrepreneurs as well as their location in the world. They researched the home country of the entrepreneur; learned about populations, languages, customs, agriculture political structure, and the challenges faces by the people who live there. This offered my students the chance to see outside their own immediate realities and glimpse into the world around them.

That instant connection is a powerful force in the development of a globally conscious individual and had an incredibly positive and long-lasting impact on our students. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have participated in this program.

Tina Riley
6th grade teacher, Wickman Elementary School